Top 5 Gambling Court Cases

The gambling industry is no stranger to controversy. It is an industry where a lot of money is involved.

Hence, it is not surprising that controversial incidents seem to be never far away from the gambling industry.

Some cases are much bigger than the rest and truly rocked the industry. Not all casinos and slots do entertain winnings like Vinnarum free spins.

Here are some of the high-profile court cases involving the gambling industry:

Isle Hotel Casino vs Pauline McKee

Pauline McKee would have had little hope of hitting a huge jackpot at 87 years of age. Yet, it is exactly what happened with the Illinois-based grandmother, who managed to win just over $41 million at a slot machine. Miss Kitty slot, which was developed by IGT, provided this astronomical win. This huge sum of money appeared to have changed their lives overnight, but McKee was in for a surprise when the venue rejected the success by blaming a computer glitch. In a David versus Goliath contest, McKee took on the casino in a legal battle. However, the court ruling came in favour of the venue.

Astonishingly, McKee was only deemed to have won $1.85. The court went on to claim that the maximum payout from the slot game was only $10,000.

Crockfords vs Phil Ivey

This remains as the most iconic gambling court case ever, so much so that it is still taking place even today. Phil Ivey is one of the instantly recognisable professional poker players. He launched an appeal in 2014 against a High Court verdict that he did not use legal methods to secure a win of £7.8 million loss. The court case was a direct result of Crockfords refusing to pay the winnings based on an investigation into the gaming methods of the player in 2012.

Ivey was at the table along with Cheung Yin Sun – his partner. It is not the first case surrounding Ivey, who is $9.6 million victory at a Las Vegas casino has also been contested. It is expected that the decision on the Crockfords case could also have an implication on the $9.6 million Borgata case.

EuroBet Casino vs Bruno Venturi

Online gambling has become the trend these days, but it is also not exempted from such court cases. The sole high-profile case against an online site happens to be Bruno Venturi’s case against EuroBet. A 41-year-old Italian, Venturi managed to get a huge £650,000 jackpot on a bet of just £18 in 2009. He was using the Sixty Seconds lottery game on the website. Even though Venturi received congratulatory messages from the casino upon winning, it soon turned into a sour note for the 41-year-old as the venue backtracked on their word.

When they used a computer glitch as a reason for not entertaining the winnings, Venturi took the company to the High Court. However, it was ruled that Venturi would not stand to win any prize given that he had agreed to the terms and conditions, which allowed for the venue to disregard any winnings that may result from computer errors.

Two Swiss Casinos vs Christian Hainz

Christian Hainz came to prominence in 2004 when he managed to win a court case against not one but two of them. The disputed sum came to over €2.5 million, as he successfully sued the places owned by Casinos Austria. A compulsive gambler, Hainz claimed that he lost a huge sum of money between 1997 and 2000. The money was lost on table games like blackjack and roulette. The 40-year-old claimed that the casinos took advantage of his gambling addiction by not preventing the excesses. Casinos Austria were made to pay just under €500,000 as compensation.

Ritz Club vs Safa Abdulla Al Geabury

This was a case in which the individual was at fault rather than the venue. Businessman Safa Abdulla Al Geabury agreed to pay £2 million to the London based Ritz Casino in order to continue gambling through the night at a roulette table. The cheque given by the 53-year-old was not honoured. Abdulla Al Geabury tried to get around the issue by claiming that he was a compulsive gambler, and that the place did not do enough to prevent him from gambling with such a huge move money.

The court rejected the statements and ruled the verdict in favour of Ritz Club. Abdulla Al Geabury was forced to spend 10 months in jail.

While there are occasions when the casinos have come out second best, they have more often than not triumphed in the court cases.